Handpicked selection of the best children books about Rome. From sticker books to guide books for kids, these are the best books for kids about Rome, Italy.
Books are one of my favorite ways to teach my kids about Rome, both when we are in Rome and before and after a trip.
Before we go, I use them to help my kids get excited about what we are about to go see and let them pick something that catches their attention.
Once in Rome, we use them to dig deeper into stories and facts about Rome I may not remember or even know – the city has that many!
Once back home, we use them to strengthen and fix in the memory what we saw and learned, usually while we go thought photos and reminisce about our Rome itinerary.
I am always on the lookout for great children books about Rome: I look for them in our local library, in Rome’s shops and museums (Rome museums tend to have the best and biggest selection and have a surprising number of them in English) and of course I use Amazon.
This is my selection of the best children’s books about Rome.
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Best children books about Rome: Rome guides for kids
Rome City Trails by Lonely Planet
Lonely Planet City Trails is one of the Lonely Planet City series for kids and one my kids always enjoy.
The Rome version is no exception. The book is a mix between a guide book and a fun fact book and is packed with information and factoids, organized by Rome area, which makes it easy to use both before your trip and while in Rome.
I personally find the visual of it too busy but my primary school kids find it excellent so chances are yours will too!
The book is presented for older primary school kids but the photos and busy layout can make it fun for smaller kids too.
Lonely Planet This is Rome
This is another guidebook for kids about Rome by Lonely Planet, part of a series featuring several city, and one of our favorite.
The book has really cute illustrations with different Rome landmarks and piazzas and has many fun facts and stories about the city written in easy to follow yet accurate way.
This book is as different as it gets from the one above, despite being from the same publisher, and I recommend getting them both as they complement each other well and do not overlap as much as the topic may suggest.
Lonely Planet Rome: Not for Parents
My kids love this book, the name alone suggesting it is something just for them! I find it somewhat similar to the City Trails one, in terms of layout and images so I am not sure it would be worth getting both (if you click on Amazon, you can look inside and see what I mean) but on its own, it is a great kids book about Rome.
It is suitable for school-age kids who like fun facts, presented on colorful pages and among lots of photos and images.
Mission Rome, a scavenger hunt
Another book perfect to bring to Rome with you, if you are ready to let your kids lead the way!
The book is full of things for kids to find, as I am sure you guessed from the title, and is great to help you plan your day out, give the kids a ‘mission’ for the day and even keep them entertained in locations you have chosen and they may not be otherwise so keen on seeing like the Pantheon.
You can use it to set up a plan for the day and you can easily bring it with you as it is appropriately light and portable
Children books about Rome: fiction, sticker books, reference
The Coliseum Con – Geronimo Stilton
Geronimo Stilton is the reason my son got his love for reading (he went from not wanting to read in his free time to read a book a day from this series!) so when we discovered one of Geronimo’s book about Rome, we simply had to get it.
The book is very different from the novels we were used to and is more like a comic book but it is nicely made and fun to read. A good introduction to Rome and the character too.
I just wish the spelling of the Colosseum was, indeed, ColOSSEUM. But that’s just me being annoying….
Diary of Dorkius Maximus
As the name and cover suggest, this is part of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series (a firm favorite with my son) but set in ancient Rome.
It is a fun, easy read, with the type of humor you find in the other books but with added factoids about Rome. This is an easy read and a very easy way to get kids in the mood for Rome without going into full-on education mode.
Madeline and the cats of Rome
If your kids like Madeline books, then the are likely to also like this one which tells the story of Madeline’ visit to the Eternal City.
Published in 2009, it was the first new Madeline book in 50 years but it follows the style of the originals very closely, so you find the same style and charm.
This is a nice book for younger kids: make sure you tell them you can indeed visit the cats of Rome!
They are in Largo di Torre Argentina and while their shelter is not as atmospheric as the name ‘cat sanctuary’ suggests, it is a nice stop for a cuddle and on the best places in Rome for kids to break up sightseeing.
Ready to Read Romulus and Remus
Another cute book especially for younger kids, introducing the story of Romulus and Remus, the twins at the core of the story of the foundation of Rome.
The book is written in short, east to tackle paragraphs and is a good way to introduce kids to characters such as the Roman she-wolf, which they can try spot while in Rome (hint: an easy to spot one is on top of the Capitol hill!)
Ancient Rome Eyewitness
This eyewitness book about Rome for kids is almost like a Rome encyclopedia, with lots and lots of images and facts about ancient Rome.
This is great for older kids who want to dive deep into facts or even use this as an aid for a school project. Not a fictional book or a guide but good reference and one they can use over and over again also in years to come.
Romans, Usborne Sticker Book
This was one of the very first books I got for my kids and it a great way to get them to engage with the ancient history of the city from a very young age.
If you have an older child who is getting a reading book about Rome and want something for a younger one who may feel let out, this is a good choice!
the illustrations are excellent quality, so much so that older kids will like them too, and there are very many stickers inside. A good plane or restaurant activity if you are on your way to Rome!
See inside ancient Rome
Another book by Usborne, with the same high-quality images as the one above, but this one with flaps! A cool book to learn factoids about Rome
There are SO many flaps to lift, this is again a great one for the plane or restaurant.
The thieves of Ostia and the Roman Mysteries series
The thieves of Ostia is the first of a series of books set in ancient Rome by Caroline Lawrence, which gest consistent praise from kids and teachers alike.
I haven’t read the books yet, as they are for kids older than mine and are said to have some gruesome elements I am not keen on reading about but the reviews from (American) friends and on Amazon are sufficient for me to at least mention them in this list and give you a link so you can make up your own mind about their suitability for your child.
I hope you enjoyed this selection of children’s books about Rome and it helped you find good ones to keep your kids entertained and learning both at home and in Rome. Safe travels!